By: Melanie | March 29, 2014 | (26) Comments

Review: Dear Killer by Katherine EwellDear Killer by Katherine Ewell
Publisher: Katherine Tegen
Release Date: April 1, 2014
Genres: Mystery, Thriller, YA
Pages: 368
Source: Received in exchange for review
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Rule One—Nothing is right, nothing is wrong.
Rule Two—Be careful.
Rule Three—Fight using your legs whenever possible, because they’re the strongest part of your body. Your arms are the weakest.
Rule Four—Hit to kill. The first blow should be the last, if at all possible.
Rule Five—The letters are the law.

Kit takes her role as London’s notorious “Perfect Killer” seriously. The letters and cash that come to her via a secret mailbox are not a game; choosing who to kill is not an impulse decision. Every letter she receives begins with “Dear Killer,” and every time Kit murders, she leaves a letter with the dead body. Her moral nihilism and thus her murders are a way of life—the only way of life she has ever known.

But when a letter appears in the mailbox that will have the power to topple Kit’s convictions as perfectly as she commits her murders, she must make a decision: follow the only rules she has ever known, or challenge Rule One, and go from there.

Katherine Ewell’s Dear Killer is a sinister psychological thriller that explores the thin line between good and evil, and the messiness of that inevitable moment when life contradicts everything you believe.

I really hate the be that girl who goes around hating every book she picks up. For the past few weeks, there have only been negative reactions to novels. Dear Killer was the same. I tried so hard to see light in it, but that’s pretty hard when it’s a pile of shit.

Let’s start with our main character, Kit. She’s the Perfect Killer. A killer who kills without a trace each time. A killer who leaves notes with the body. A killer who is 17 years old and is naive and more stupid than the dumbest person on Earth. Kit has no logic. I don’t get why she kills in the first place. I mean, we get told that her mother used to kill and so it went in the family but what was the purpose? Some ridiculous rule such as “Nothing is right, nothing is wrong.” Is not going to stop me from asking questions. It’s just made me wonder why in the seven seas I bothered with this book in the first place. Anyway. One example of Kit’s stupidity is when she goes up to a cop who is investigating the Perfect Killer case, and gives him undiscovered information.

“The Perfect Killer is based in Chelsea and is a student,” I said loudly.

Then she befriends him.

This girl is a genius. She’s trying to stay undercover yet just to show how smart and resourceful she is to a cop, she reveals information that will eventually bite back at her if she just does one slip up. And she does. Later, there’s a boy in her school that she hates. She punches him and threatens him in public. Spoiler alert: He dies a few days later.

There’s a lot of suspension of disbelief going off in Dear Killer. Firstly, the letters. The Perfect Killer has a mailbox where people can send her letters for requests to kill someone. The letter contains all the information of why the person want them dead and where the Perfect Killer can find them. The Perfect Killer receives a lot of mail each month, the letterbox is said to be overflowing a one point. So why the heck don’t the cops know about it? The Perfect Killer leaves the letters she gets sent with the person’s body. Can’t the cops just read the letter, find the person who wrote it and interrogate them into revealing the address of the letterbox? Then all the cops would need to do is write a fake letter, post it in the letterbox and trap the Perfect Killer? It’s that simple. Another example of my suspension disbelief is how the Perfect Killer kills. Probably due the the author’s writing, but I just felt like it was too simple. The Perfect Killer just strolls in, does a kick in the face and boom. dead. I know it’s possible, but each and every time? Hard to believe.

Furthermore, the character is always saying that she’s good at killing and she can kill. But for most of the murders she commits in this book, I swear I, a 14 year old teenager who spends all her time in her room watching TV shows, doing homework and reading and owning a book blog, could do the crappy, half-assed killing that Kit did.

(This gif sums up Kit’s lack of skill very well)

Due to all these criticisms, this was my expression the whole time:

And as a last complaint, the ending was anticlimatic. It just ended so randomly. Like if you’re going to end it, END IT RIGHT.

~Thank you Katherine Tegen for sending me this copy!~

1 Stars
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Owner (and crazy nut) at YA Midnight Reads
Melanie is one of the totally fabulous bloggers at YA Midnight Reads. She's a 16 year old student from Melbourne, Australia. She is normally found binge watching TV series, reading , blogging, procrastinating or fangirling about how Percabeth is the best ship ever. She's also a lover of caps lock and uses it excessively.

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26 Responses to Review: Dear Killer by Katherine Ewell

  1. I’ve been seeing so many negative reviews for this one, Melanie. D: If the time comes that I decide to read this, it’ll be because I want to get a good laugh out of how stupid it is. I mean, giving the cop (who I’ve heard is a really hot guy) clues like that is like screaming, “I’m the killer, I’m the killer!” while prancing around in a hula skirt.

    Lovely review, dear! <3
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  2. Ohhh, DANG. I’ve heard so many negative reviews about this, I’m basically just crying. The whole boring thing will be the death of me. This was one of my highly anticipated reads of the year! And nooooo it sounds so dumb. On a completely related note, I’ve only seen like 3 episodes of Teen Wolf. I feel like that needs remedying at some point asap.
    Cait @ Notebook Sisters recently posted…Stacking the Shelves #17My Profile

  3. Melliane says:

    well sometimes when you don’t have any chance, it keeps going and going. I really hope the next one will be better lady, because it’s sad for you at the end.
    Melliane recently posted…Stacking the Shelves #87My Profile

  4. Siiri says:

    JACKSON GIF :’) *reads more* eh, I heard that it was just wtf upon wtf with the requests and plot wholed just as you said. I think it’s more for younger audiences who don’t need things to be realistic and you, my friend, are not a typical 14 year old. You have a brain that knows the definition of thinking and you are allowed to dislike things that seem silly for you. Ohhh, a Tyler Posey gid with Dylan patting his face with a lacrosse glove. *scrolls more* OHHHHH a Holland gif. Girl, I approve the gif theme :’) Sorry this wasn’t for you 🙁
    Siiri recently posted…Review: The Coldest Girl in Coldtown by Holly BlackMy Profile

    • Melanie says:

      Aww thanks! I like to think I have a brain lolz. Hehe yep, been drunk on Teen Wolf and was going through gifs and thought that I may as well throw some in a review!

  5. Glass says:

    I am not fan of this kind of books generally, so I wasn’t planning on reading it anyway, but I feel your pain of being a girl who hates books that everyone else likes. :/
    Glass recently posted…Wait For You by J. LynnMy Profile

  6. Emily says:

    Heh, I just commented on two other reviews of this novel today, and it was all CRASH AND BURN BABY for them too >< Honestly, I think if I were a cop, or maybe if I was a person with a brain (oh! wait, I DO have a brain!), I would catch this seemingly notorious Kit. How convenient, I can see so many roads that would lead the police or anybody to Kit! It's so simple! Why can't they solve this case? BLERGH. Heh. Anyway, I hope you will find a book you'll love, Mel! 🙁 I'm sorry there are so many books you haven't been enjoying D: Maybe try rereading another book (one of your favorites) that will help perk you up! 😀
    Emily recently posted…Favourite AnimalsMy Profile

  7. You are really, really, REALLY not alone in your sentiments, dear. Almost everyone I knew hated this novel, and even though I have the ARC, I don’t feel like subjecting myself to the very same torture. I read somewhere that her requests are so stupid sometimes like “my gf doesn’t like my vices so plz kill her!!!11!111!” >.> I’m sorry you didn’t enjoy this one. Completely understandable that you didn’t though. I wouldn’t have finished and would have torn the book to pieces ^^;
    Faye @ The Social Potato recently posted…Recaps, Rants, Raves: The 100, Episode 2 – “To Survive, Be Idiots”My Profile

  8. I started this and didn’t get all that far. I wasn’t enjoying it one bit so I’m pretty confident I’ll DNF. I couldn’t get my head around believing that the MC was a killer and a skilled one at that. Just seemed too far fetched. I’m sorry you didn’t like it and have had bad luck with books lately. Hopefully the next read is amazing.
    Kristen@My Friends Are Fiction recently posted…Stacking the ShelvesMy Profile

  9. I can see how this book may appeal to some people but not everybody. And it sounds like Kit is not following Rule #2.

  10. Tanja says:

    Wait this girl is the perfect killer and at the same time naive and dumb? How on Earth you combine these two things together. I mean, I’m actually stunned. Anyhow I’m so sorry you’re having troubles with books lately. I really hope that your next read will be your fave! 😉 Great review, Mel 🙂
    Tanja recently posted…Wait For You by J. LynnMy Profile

  11. Paij Slater says:

    I for one really appreciate an honest review. Especially if it is something I have been on the fence about reading. You are good to even finish reading it. If a book bothers me or I cannot get roped in within the first few chapters, I don’t even try to finish anymore. There are just too many book I want to read to read ones that I don’t connect with.
    Paij Slater recently posted…RIP VOL. 1 CHOICES AFTER DEATH by Daniel Sherrier – ReviewMy Profile

  12. Lexa Cain says:

    I’m not fond of this publisher to begin with. Here, they really jumped the shark. The premise is just for shock value to get people to buy. The BS meter is pegged to the top on this one. Good review. 🙂
    Lexa Cain recently posted…Egypt Comics & CelebrateMy Profile

  13. SHE SAID THAT TO THE COP NO WHY WOULD SHE DO THAT I AM ANGRY. Seriously, Mel, you need to read a good book ASAP. Project Find Mel A Good Book is GO. You seem to not be having any luck lately 🙁
    Emily @ The Loony Teen Writer recently posted…What Happened This Week: Embalming, Fangirling and StudyingMy Profile

  14. Oh dear, this one sounds bad, like I don’t even know bad. I don’t know if I’m going to get around to reading it in that case. HAHA the kick in the face is hilarious! And laughable.
    Jeann @ Happy Indulgence recently posted…Stacking the Shelves #24 – Dreams of Gods & MonstersMy Profile

  15. Zoe N. says:

    Wait…what? She tells the police information on how to capture her?! What the heck? That is the one of stupidest things I have ever heard character in a book doing!

    And even though the concept sounds really intriguing, it’s a shame that it’s so unbelievable. I can definitely see where you’re coming from though in terms of how easy it would be to track this person down. Definitely ruins the majority of the suspense, right?

    Anyhow, thanks so much for sharing Mel. So sorry this one didn’t work for you. 🙁 🙁 🙁 I think I’m going to take your word and give this one a pass. Hopefully your next read is better! <3
    Zoe N. recently posted…SalvageMy Profile

    • Melanie says:

      Well she basically just gives info that the cops haven’t even worked out, and it just puts her in a lot of danger. What an idiot of a teenager.

  16. Nara says:

    I KNOW RIGHT. This book was so ridiculously unrealistic! The letter thing was SO stupid. As if the police wouldn’t have found it by now…especially since her mum used the same drop-off point.
    And heck yes, the ending was so disappointing. So annoyingly open-ended!
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  17. I’ve been reading similar reviews of this one, so it’s not just you! I hate that it’s really, really unrealistic because I love the premise.
    ShootingStarsMag recently posted…Book Promo/Giveaway – Miss Mabel’s School for GirlsMy Profile

  18. Yeah I definitely can see where you’re coming from! I gave this one four stars mainly because it was really interesting and unique, but the whole letter thing confused me SO much. Like literally the suspect is so obvious from the letters and the reasoning behind why they couldn’t interrogate the suspects is because they’d get charged for the murder or the letter could be a fake one. And how does she even get paid for the murders? Like she chooses which murders she wants to commit and which ones she doesn’t so if she gets paid afterwards, the person could just never give her the money or she would just take the money for the murder even though she’d never go through with it? There were a lot of plot holes, but I mostly gave it points for originality lol. Sorry this one wasn’t for you, Mellybean, but fantastic review! <33
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  19. She kills to make us happy, duuuuh! :p Haha, just kidding, but her mother said that we need to remind ourselves how precious our human relationships are.. So the tension of having a killer makes us appreciate it more *blablablabla* Doesn’t make more sense than having no explanation.

    The mailbox and the overall stupidity of Kit *big sigh* Just no.
    Mel@thedailyprophecy recently posted…Early Review 246. Katherine Ewell – Dear killer.My Profile

  20. Wow, the main character sounds so stupid. I guess you really do need to suspend your belief sometimes, but it’s not like this is a fantasy book. Details matter!!
    Joy @ Thoughts By J recently posted…Disruption Book Launch EventMy Profile

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